11 Aug 2010

China's link with Fiji about international support and economic opportunity - academic

3:40 pm on 11 August 2010

Fiji's interim Prime Minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, has again stated that Fiji's future lies with China, not New Zealand, Australia or the United States.

Speaking from Beijing, he told Fiji Village, that as far as understanding, opportunities and assistance were concerned, China was the way to go.

A senior lecturer at Auckland University, Dr Jiang Yang, who is an expert on China's Foreign Relations, says Beijing's policies take no account of internal politics.

He says they are interested in Fiji for the support it can provide in international organisations and at the economic level:

"China does have interest in unused land in Fiji and when I was talking to Chinese diplomats in Suva they said look we have money you have resources, you have unused land, we have workers, we can basically have more cooperation."

Dr Yang says at present trade between the two countries is in China's favour, but it's hoped Chinese investment in Fiji could be one way to balance the books